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UN rights expert concerned over UK’s widespread discrimination

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UNITED NATIONS, May 2, 2018 (Xinhua) -- United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres speaks during Labor Day celebration, at the UN headquarters in New York, May 1, 2018. (Xinhua/Li Muzi/IANS) by .
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres (Xinhua/Li Muzi/IANS)

The UN Special Rapporteur on racism, E. Tendayi Achiume, expressed concern over how normalised hateful, stigmatising discourse was becoming, including among high-ranking officials … reports Asian Lite News.

UNITED NATIONS, May 2, 2018 (Xinhua) -- United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres speaks during Labor Day celebration, at the UN headquarters in New York, May 1, 2018. (Xinhua/Li Muzi/IANS) by .
(File Photo: Xinhua/Li Muzi/IANS)

An UN rights expert has expressed concerns over the “widespread discrimination” faced by ethnic minorities, Brexit-era hate crimes and immigration consequences in Britain.

The UN Special Rapporteur on racism, E. Tendayi Achiume, on Friday also expressed concern over how normalised hateful, stigmatising discourse was becoming, including among high-ranking officials, Xinhua news agency reported.

She said that the anti-migrant, anti-foreigner rhetoric developed around the campaign in favour of Brexit had become widespread in society.

“I am shocked by the criminalisation of young people from ethnic minorities, especially young black men. They are over-represented in police stop and searches, more likely to face prosecution under the country’s joint enterprise provisions, and are over-represented in the prison system,” she said at the end of a fact-finding visit to Britain.

“I have been informed of so-called ‘gang matrix’ databases held in several cities in England which are used as the basis for surveillance operations against young men and boys who are predominantly black and are listed as potential future violent offenders, sometimes without any basis,” she added.

The UN expert said that austerity measures were having a disproportionate impact on ethnic minorities and called for a unified UK-level policy that lays out a comprehensive strategy and benchmarks for systemic elimination of unlawful racial disparities.

The Special Rapporteur will present her final report to the June 2019 session of the UN Human Rights Council.